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Let’s talk cheese

And not in a food way.

I’m a private person, in that I do not in any way want random internet strangers to hear my deepest emotional thoughts and feelings.

When I read food blogs, I often think I must be the only one.

I’m tired of these women bleeding all over the page (so to speak). It’s awesome that you love your kids and your husband- I love my husband, too, that’s why I married him!- but for the love of absolute flaming Pete, I don’t need to hear endless lists of what you’re grateful for, of how you are emotionally touched by every ray of starlight twinkling in a sprinkling of morning dew. Ugh. Please spare me your hormonal soliloquies. POST SOME FOOD.

Most female food bloggers, especially GF ones, are quite well-off. I’m not. I don’t have the time nor the ability to stop and grovel with false humility about how much in love I am with free-range eggs and every single stupid person who comes into my day. Maybe that’s the difference- some of us do real, terrible, hard, and low-paying work for a living, so we don’t look at life through rose-coloured glasses? I don’t know.

I have a legitimate allergy to gluten, a legitimate love for the people and things who deserve it, and a VERY legitimate hate for overweaning false humility.

I guess I’m alone.

1. Sorry I haven’t been updating much. Between working the holiday rush at my seasonal non-digging job, taking the GRE, and enjoying a shit-tastic flu, I haven’t been cooking much. In fact, I’m suffering from my sick person’s diet of dehydrated chicken noodle soup, because I’ve been THAT uninterested in food or cooking.

 

2. …except for on Christmas Eve! The tradition in my family is a big meal the night before Christmas, so that we can spend Christmas day eating omelets and watching Star Wars and all that good shit.

I decided to make four things I’ve never made before for Christmas Eve this year. All of them turned out beautifully and were amazingly good. Here are links, for your perusal:

Cucumber and Zucchini Carpaccio Salad (lacto-ovo, gluten-free, low-carbohydrate)

Aigo Bouido, or Provencale garlic soup (can be made vegetarian-friendly [which I did], gluten-free, low carbohydrate)

Roasted Cauliflower and Cabbage Pasta with Fried Capers and Cheddar (lacto-ovo, gluten-free [depending on what kind of pasta or pasta substitutes you use], low carbohydrate [again, depending on your pasta])

Cranberry Lemon Loaf (lacto-ovo, gluten-free, low carbohydrate)

I suggest you try them all!

Hi, guys. Serious post, now.

I really hate my birthday. Something terrible always happens. For example, one year my grandfather died AND my boyfriend dumped me! Nice, eh?

But this year, I’m determined not to let it suck- by having the people I love most, instead of having to buy me tchothkes, help people in Ethiopia get the clean water they need.

If you’d like to help, please go to http://mycharitywater.org/birthdays-are-superfluous-but-water-is-necessary and donate what you can. Even a dollar is better than no dollar.

While you’re reading this site, you’re thinking about your various food allergies and how you’d like to drop ten pounds. My god, do you realize how selfish this whole thing is? Gluten-free, my ass- without Norman Borlog’s modified wheat, many people alive today wouldn’t be. So what, it gives you a tummyache, too bad.

Please donate to my charity and give hope to all of us.

Of course, no one expects something for nothing, so here’s what I’m offering in return:

1. The person to crack $100 gets a hand-written poem about how awesome they are. Said poem will be illustrated. It will be a humorous poem.

2. Whoever gets me to $250 gets to pick a meat product of their choice, of which I will take at least two bites. I will also videotape this and send it to you.

3. Whoever bumps us up to $500 wins the following: I will dress up like Katy Perry and stand on the corner of a major intersection, holding up a massive charity: water sign. I will do this for no less than three hours.

4. The person who gets us to $1000? I will write and self-publish a short novel. You choose the topic. Any topic.

5. If you get me to $2500, I will bake 2500 cookies of your choice and send them to you, free of charge.

6. If you get us to $3000, I’ll donate $100 of my own money to the charity of YOUR choice, AND you’ll get 2500 cookies!

and finally…

7. If we reach $5000, I will allow the infamous video of me at karaoke to be released. I will also send you a box of archaeological artifacts that I’ve collected over the years. Finally, I will have a shirt with your picture and the caption “[STEVE-BOB JOHNSON] HELPED ME REACH MY GOAL OF $5000 AND ALL HE/SHE GETS IS THIS LOUSY T-SHIRT.”

So let’s do this!

There’s a recipe for an ice cream substitute made from bananas. Actually, made JUST from bananas. There are many versions, so many that I am loathe to link one over the other, so here is the very simple recipe:

1. Take bananas

2. Cut bananas

3. Freeze bananas

4. Blenderize

And it equals ice cream, really! It’s creamy and almost exactly the right texture.

There are two things that I don’t really like very much that everyone else seems to love: ice cream and bananas. So why the hell did I make this? Not sure, except I for some reason had a sugar craving and desperately wanted to squelch it.

The problem is this: since I don’t like bananas, I added honey and peanut butter to mine. The texture was gorgeous, and it tasted wonderful, but it was waaaaaaaaay too sweet. And at 40 carbs a serving, not much better than actual ice cream.

So.

Here are my recommendations for making this at home:

1. Don’t bother adding any more sweetener. Bananas are ungodly sweet, a fact I forgot. In fact, were I to make this again- and I might, it really was nicer than I expected- I would probably chuck lemon juice in.

2. Don’t scoop up a big bowl. You won’t finish.

3. Don’t make too much. If you refreeze it, the texture changes somewhat, and while it’s still tasty, it’s not as luscious and creamy.

4. Don’t expect a super diet-friendly treat. Like I said, one serving of this stuff has about forty carbs. No fat and few calories, but that’s sort of the opposite of my diet plan.

 

Caveat bananas, my friends.

Just added to the FAQ


Someone is looking at this site! I am literally shocked shitless! Well, no, not literally- that’d be a hell of a mess.

In any case, I added some shiznoorts to the FAQ/”About” page, based on the questions I’ve been asked in the past few days.

Hope this helps! Here is a Jon Hamm:

jon-hamm-shirtless-mad-men-beach-scenes-in-hawaii

GO AWAY, MEGAN, YOU ANNOY ME

Chai-Spiced Yogurt

This recipe is awesome because it works both as a base and a meal within itself. Add fruit to this, or even (gasp!) cereal, or just eat it in all its gooey glory. It’s also awesome because it reminds me somewhat of a sip of iced chai, which is always good. Always.

Feel free to futz around with the spices and add more/ less of anything.

CHAI-SPICED YOGURT

Makes one bowl

Ingredients:

1 cup plain Greek yogurt

1 tablespoon Splenda

1/2 tablespoon honey

1/4 tsp ground cloves

1/4 tsp ground cinnamon

1/4 ground ginger

1. Mix ingredients

2…eat them?

Nutritional Info
  • Servings Per Recipe: 1
  • Amount Per Serving
  • Calories: 151.9
  • Total Fat: 0.0 g
  • Cholesterol: 0.0 mg
  • Sodium: 65.4 mg
  • Total Carbs: 20.7 g
  • Dietary Fiber: 0.0 g
  • Protein: 20.0 g

 

Kimchi Doenjang Jigae

This is my favourite food on earth, hands down.

The first time I had doenjang jigae was at the only (at that time) Japanese/Korean restaurant in the area where I grew up, Tokyo Seoul. My best friend and I were proto-weeaboos: more music for me than anime or manga, more video games for both of us than anything else, but still annoying little whitebread wannabe Asians. As such, we demanded Japanese food whenever possible, and when our parents were especially generous, they took us to Tokyo Seoul.

Although Japanese food took up the bulk of the menu, Korean soups, stews, noodles, and appetizers also made an appearance. For about a year, I was entranced by the “spicy tofu soup” advertised on the Korean side of the menu, but didn’t have the nerve to order it- what if it had fish or pork or something else in it that was really, really gross?

One day, though, I got up the courage to ask. Yes, there were small clams in it, but they could leave those out. The broth was okay. The waitress warned me that it was spicy- was that okay?

Uh, yeah!

Every single spoonful was astonishing. Although I didn’t yet have the tolerance for spice that I do now, necessitating constant spoonfuls from my rice bowl, I ate the whole sumbitch. And I repeated the experiment whenever I could. And then I realized there was a kimchi version, and my Grinch-y heart grew two sizes that day!

I make no claims for authenticity in this recipe, since it’s usually made with pork and, at least when I ordered it in Japan, small clams and the occasional shrimp. But doenjang jigae is a family dish, and every household has their own recipe, so here’s mine.

A note about kimchi: Kimchi is traditionally prepared with small shrimp and other fishy things in the fermenting stage. You can easily buy vegan kimchi at health food stores- even here in Nowhere, MT, I can find three different kinds- two at the health food store, and one at Albertson’s! It’s also very easy to make your own (recipe for that soon, still working on my first batch.) The issue I have with vegetarian kimchi is that it goes bad more quickly, so if you get a gallon jug of it, be prepared to add kimchi to everything you eat (I wouldn’t have any complaints!).

If you do not like kimchi, feel free to leave it out and add a touch more gochujang or kochukaru (the Korean chili pepper powder used in kimchi creation). By the way, my mom hates kimchi, but she LOVES this soup.

A note about the soy and sauce products: Doenjang can be substituted with white miso. Also, Wikipedia says better than I could that “While traditional homemade doenjang is made with soybeans and brine only, many factory-made variants of doenjang contain a fair amount of wheat flour just like most factory-made soy sauce does. Some current makers also add fermented, dried, and ground anchovies to accentuate the doenjang’s savory flavor.” So check the label! And if you can’t find nutritional info in English and you’re shopping at a Korean market, for goodness’ sake, get someone who works there to look for allergens on the label. It’s okay, don’t be shy.

Gochujang, which is a major component of this dish, can potentially have both wheat flour and sugar/other sweeteners in it. Again, check the label. If I had to use something else in place of gochujang, I would just lay on the kochukaru and add a touch of honey.

This recipe is completely vegan, if you don’t add butter or fish sauce and if you check the aforementioned ingredients for non-vegetarian allergens. You cannot make it soy-free.

KIMCHI DOEJANG JIGAE

Makes roughly six bowls of soup.

INGREDIENTS:

2 tablespoons gochujang (Korean chili paste)

1 tablespoon doenjang (or white miso)

1 tablespoon mirin (can be substituted with sake or vodka)

2 cups water or vegetable broth (there’s plenty of salt in this, so use low or no sodium broth, if you can)

14 oz/400 grams cabbage kimchi (feel free to add more!)

4 cloves garlic

1 onion, halved and then sliced

1 tablespoon soy sauce

a dash of fish sauce (optional)

a dash of rice vinegar

400 grams of extra-firm tofu

1 zucchini, halved and sliced

2 tablespoons butter (optional)

2 scallions, chopped

2 tablespoons sesame oil

1 tablespoon olive oil (or a more neutral oil. I use olive oil for everything.)

1. Saute the onions and garlic in the mixed oils until the onions start becoming translucent.

2. Add broth, doenjang, gochujang, vinegar, fish sauce, mirin, and soy sauce.

3. Immediately after putting in wet ingredients, add kimchi, tofu, and zucchini.

4. Simmer covered for 20 minutes, stirring occasionally.

5. Add butter and stir in until melted.

6. Serve topped with scallions, alone or alongside a bowl of white rice.

I HATE YOUR CARB PROBLEMS: Rice, rice, baby. Also, put some sliced potatoes in with the wet ingredients!

I HATE YOUR VEGETARIAN FACE: Pork it up! Cook your pork with the onions and garlic (I think…)

I HATE YOUR BUTT: Whatever, loser, my butt is amazing.

 

Calories 129.0
  Total Fat 5.8 g
  Saturated Fat 2.0 g
  Polyunsaturated Fat 1.5 g
  Monounsaturated Fat 1.3 g
  Cholesterol 6.6 mg
  Sodium 1,257.7 mg
  Potassium 186.9 mg
  Total Carbohydrate 11.6 g
  Dietary Fiber 2.9 g
  Sugars 5.2 g
  Protein 6.4 g
  Vitamin A 37.1 %
  Vitamin B-12 0.1 %
  Vitamin B-6 4.2 %
  Vitamin C 8.4 %
  Vitamin E 0.5 %
  Calcium 11.8 %
  Copper 6.1 %
  Folate 5.8 %
  Iron 6.6 %
  Magnesium 10.0 %
  Manganese 25.4 %
  Niacin 2.0 %
  Pantothenic Acid     1.0 %
  Phosphorus     9.0 %
  Riboflavin 2.7 %
  Selenium 7.1 %
  Thiamin 3.0 %
  Zinc 3.9 %
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